And now for something completely different….
I’ve decided to post the ten chapters of my short fiction story The Librarian to my site, just because I can. I will post each chapter periodically.
I’ve worked on this story off and on over the past few years. I think I’m done with it. Fiction is not my true forte, but it seemed to need to be written.
Hope you enjoy the read.
The memory of how Isis came to be a permanent resident of the Okanagan Regional Library in Kelowna was fast fading. The interval between life and death had been an immense shift of energy and atoms. Now, existence amongst the rows of books, old CDs, DVDs, the newspaper and magazine stacks, the desks and computers, and the carts piled high with returns, seemed the most natural phenomenon in the world. With the expansive windows of the modern building overlooking Ellis and Doyle streets below, honey locust trees lining the perimeter, and mountains in the distance, Isis felt her new dwelling an ideal sanctuary indeed.
Twilight settled in the evening as Isis stirred from a deep sleep. She sauntered down a darkened aisle of bookshelves, her crimson dress floating diaphanously around her. Rounding the end aisle, she paused at one of the computer reference terminals anchoring the foot of the staircase to choose a finely sharpened pencil and fresh sheets of torn notepaper to write down new inspirations. She reached for another pencil just in case, because dull pencils were such a nuisance.
Ascending the staircase to the second level, she ventured down the aisle labeled Non-Fiction, Call Numbers 641.3-649.1, Cooking, Sewing, and Parenting. Upon awakening, her belly began a quiet rumble, which now became a dull roar. With her well-honed night vision, Isis scanned the shelves weighted with cookbooks.
“Hmm, what do I feel like tonight? Thai? No, I had that last week. Greek? Maybe… No wait! Hola libro!” she mused to herself out loud.
Choosing a thick Spanish tome, Isis opened the book, salivating at the delicious looking pictures. Carefully placing her pencils and papers on an empty shelf, she found an image of enchiladas. Laying the book open on the floor and gingerly stepping inside the page, she dissolved down and into the glossy photograph. Once inside, Isis simply became part of the scrumptious photo. She enthusiastically bit into the tasty enchiladas, devouring every spicy bite with the accompanying guacamole. Flipping from the inner seam and carefully back a few pages, she found a refreshing lime margarita to wash it all down. Sated, Isis looked out into the library hovering hazily above and stepped back out of the book.
She failed to notice how all the photographs she had just cleared rematerialized back as they were before, once the pages of the book quickly flipped closed.
Hiccupping contentedly, Isis retrieved the loose sheets of paper and her pointy pencils to resume her nighttime ritual. Scanning the bulletin board at the front door, she tsked. Three expired notices remained posted. She despised laziness and obviously someone was not doing their job taking down old posters. She must leave a note on the front desk, anonymous of course, lest she scare the living daylights out of one of her former co-workers. She had enrolled in intricate writing lessons inside a calligraphy book a few months back. The talented, mild-mannered gentleman who wrote the book lived in Vancouver, the coastal city where Isis grew up. After he reanimated within the constraints of the book, he patiently guided her through all the exercises with an exquisite set of calligraphy pens to practice her technique. Isis had been leaving notes in beautiful, swirling scripts ever since for the library associates. They speculated incessantly about who could be responsible for the attractive notes.
The librarian became less concerned about rules and regulations after the accident, exhibiting a keen new sense of mischief. Dancing and singing up the library stairs and down the long aisles of book stacks, Isis delighted in leaving the notes for her former library staff. She left books lying on shelves where they did not belong and pushed over carts of returns mid-aisle, abandoning them with glee. She tampered with the electricity and computers, wreaking havoc online when library members tried logging on the next day.
“What the…! My password isn’t working and now the power is out! Is this library haunted or what?” demanded one disgruntled student attempting to further his studies. If only he knew.
Stay tuned for Chapter 2…